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Department of Rehabilitation Sciences
Waters College of Health Professions


Physical Therapy Faculty Present Research

This past February, faculty from the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences attended and presented at the National American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) Combined Sections Meeting in Denver, Colorado.

The following research was presented:

  • “Interprofessional Care of the Injured Athlete: Intercollegiate Models” by Walter L. Jenkins, PT, MS, ATC, LAT, DHS, Allen Hardin, PT, ATC, MS, Tory Lindley, ATC, Jill Maria Thein-Nissenbaum, PT, MPT, ATC, DSc, Amy Powell, MD
  • “What Is All the Hype About Running Shoes? Practical Implications for the Running Tactical Athlete” by Nancy C. Henderson, PT, DPT and Haley Shea Worst, PT, DPT
  • “Combat Sports: Different Types, Rehabilitation, Performance Enhancement, and How Self Defense May Save Your Life” by George James Davies, PT, DPT, MEd, FAPTA, Lauren Lou, PT, DPT and Charles E. Rainey, PT, DPT, DSc
  • “The Effects of Eccentric Loading on Hamstring Flexibility” by Dixie Edalgo, SPT, Hunter Lewis, SPT, James Rowe, SPT, Ryan Decarreau, PT, DPT, OCS, SCS, Nancy Henderson, PT, DPT, OCS
  • “Many Faces of Sports Physical Therapy” by Ross Makoto Nakaji, PT, ATC, Shefali Mathur Christopher, PT, DPT, Erik Peter Meira, PT, DPT, Susan A. Falsone, PT, ATC, MS, Stephania Leigh Bell, PT, Kerry Lee Mullenix, PT, ATC and George James Davies, PT, DPT, MEd, FAPTA
  • “Isokinetic Testing Effects of Various Positions and Velocities on Two Novel Functional Unilateral Shoulder Ratios” by Hayley Katherine Abell, SPT, Hannah Lawson, SPT, Alyssa Martinek, Bradley Seuntjens, SPT, Bryan Riemann, PhD, and George James Davies, PT, DPT, MEd, FAPTA
  • “Torque Steadiness Measurements of the Shoulder in Normal Subjects and Subjects with Shoulder Pain” by Zach Lewis Gretsch, SPT, Jacob Chandler Fogarty, SPT, Ross Chandler Morris, SPT and Kyle Marlow, SPT, Bryan Riemann and George James Davies, PT, DPT, MEd, FAPTA
  •  “The “Kneed” to Know: Sports Injuries Throughout the Lifespan” by George James Davies, PT, DPT, MEd, FAPTA, Ronald Wayne Courson, PT, Robert C Manske, PT, DPT, MEd and Michael James Tankovich, PT, DPT, ATC
  • “How to Function as a Civilian PT working with Military Tactical Athletes” by Nancy Henderson, PT, DPT, OCS, LTC, Joseph Kardouni, PT, PhD, LTC Mike Bean, PT, DPT, OCS, MAJ Mandy Wolfe, PT, DPT, OCS
  • “Effects of Education, Taping, and Stretching on Forward Head Posture and Muscular Trigger Points” by Haley Worst, PT, DPT; Nancy Henderson, PT, DPT; Andi Beth Mincer, PT, EdD, Kaitlyn Crawley, SPT; Alexis Gonzalez, SPT; Delicia Bell, SPT

In addition to presenting, attendees had the opportunity to network and interact with peers and leaders in their field and learn about the latest research and cutting-edge products. The conference was attended by over 13,000 individuals from over 30 countries and consisted of 350 educational sessions and over 1,000 poster presentations representing 18 specialty sections of APTA.  

Walk Held to Raise Funds for the RiteCare Center

This past October, the Valley of Savannah Scottish Rite Masons held their 2nd Annual Walk for RiteCare at Lake Mayer Park in Savannah, Georgia. Held annually, the walk is held as a way to raise funds for the Georgia Southern University RiteCare Center.

Eighty individuals, including Georgia Southern University Armstrong Campus students and staff, registered and participated in the walk. Featuring trick-or-treating along the walking trail for children, a children’s costume contest and a team costume contest, the event raised $5,000 for the RiteCare Center. Graduate students from the communication sciences and disorders class of 2021 team won first place for the costume contest with second place going to the communication sciences and disorders undergraduate students on National Student Speech Language Hearing Association (NSSHLA) team.

About the RiteCare Center on Armstrong Campus
The RiteCare Center is a teaching communication disorders center for students in the graduate Communication Sciences and Disorders program. Under the supervision of experienced licensed and certified speech-language pathologists, graduate students in the Communication Sciences and Disorders program provide low cost services to include assessment and intervention services for children and adults with communication delays or disorders.

About the RiteCare and Scottish Rite Masons
The RiteCare Center at Georgia Southern University is supported by the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite – Savannah Valley, in keeping with the national philanthropic program of the Scottish Rite Masons to support speech and hearing clinics. Today, there are numerous RiteCare clinics, centers and special programs operating or planned throughout the United States. Through this philanthropic effort, RiteCare Centers have significantly helped tens of thousands of children across the United States improve their communication skills in order to improve their lives.

CSDS Graduate Students Promote Community Brain Injury Awareness

Fifteen communication sciences and disorders graduate students from the Waters College of Health Professions Department of Rehabilitation Sciences participated in the 7th Annual Brain Injury Awareness Walk to support the Brain Injury Association of Georgia (BIAG) this past October.

“The Brain Injury Awareness walk is such a special event in which I am honored to have participated,” stated Savannah, Georgia native Caroline Steed. “It’s important to be involved in events like this so that we can spread awareness about traumatic brain injuries, empower the survivors and their caregivers, as well as provide support.”

Students not only participated in the walk but had the opportunity to interact with local professionals. Walks such as the Brain Injury Awareness Walk help to raise funds necessary to continue different support groups and research for those impacted by brain injuries. 

According to the American Speech-Language Hearing Association (n.d.), speech-language pathologists play an integral role in evaluating, intervening and advocating for those impacted by brain injuries. Throughout their graduate school career, communication sciences and disorders students receive direct training to promote skills needed to provide exceptional speech/language therapy services to brain injury survivors.

“As a first year graduate student, I am wrapping up my neuroanatomy and physiology course, where I have learned so much about the inner workings of the brain. However, what’s really fascinating is how each and every one of my classes is interrelated and has helped me learn ways to provide exceptional services. One of my greatest areas of interest in this field is working with those who have had a traumatic brain injury, so I am particularly grateful to be in such a great program and to be able to learn from such knowledgeable professors.” 

About BIAG
The Mission of the BIAG is to provide hope, help, and support to the citizens of Georgia who have sustained or have been affected by brain injury.

About the Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders
The Communication Sciences and Disorders graduate program allows students to enter careers in speech-language pathology as well as prepares students to pursue the ASHA Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC). The degree includes a total of 57 credit hours of academic coursework and a minimum of 400 clinical clock hours as described by ASHA for the Certificate of Clinical Competency. The program is accredited in the area of speech-language pathology by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology (CAA). 

PT Day of Service

On October 12th, 29 first-and-second year graduate physical therapy students spent their Saturday providing blood pressure and balance screenings to 114 Savannah community members as part of two National PT Day of Service events.

The Day of Service is organized by the Physical Therapy Association of Georgia and the American Physical Therapy Association as part of National Physical Therapy Month. The 5-hour long events took place at the Southwest Branch of Live Oak Public Library and the Forsyth Farmers’ Market and were organized by Haley Worst, PT, DPT, OCS, assistant professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences.

“I chose to volunteer because the profession that I am working towards does not stop outside the hours of 9-5. Physical therapy is meant to be a continual effort to serve the community in the best way that one can,” stated Luke Thayer, a second-year DPT student. ” A lot of citizens are not informed of the benefits of physical therapy and do not realize that we treat more than post-operative individuals and sports injuries. We are musculoskeletal experts and can facilitate an increase in one’s wellness by improving function, movement, balance and decreasing pain,” stated the Grayson, Georgia, native.

Students were enthusiastic about the community’s response to the events and enjoyed the opportunity to interact with people from the community while providing each participant a meaningful healthcare service. 

“I enjoyed having the opportunity to interact with the community, apply the skills I have learned so far and being able to continue to develop my personal communication skills,” stated first-year student Jacob Gross from Thomaston, Georgia.

Second year DPT student Alicia Connolly from Dacula, Georgia, chose to participate in the PT Day of Service event as a way to make a contribution to the community and get hands-on experience. “The event gave me an opportunity to assess people and talk with them about their health which will help better my skill set for when I am actually working and treating patients.”

In addition to Georgia Southern student volunteers, several current and retired physical therapy faculty members assisted in the event. Participating faculty included Worst, Sharan Zirges, PT, DPT, MSHA, Andi Beth Mincer, PT, Ed.D., and Professor Emeritus Anne Thompson.

The Physical Therapy program at Georgia Southern University is a full-time doctoral program housed in the Department of Rehabilitation Sciences. The program consists of nine semesters of academic coursework, including three full-time clinical affiliations and several additional clinical experiences. 

CSDS Graduate Students Present on Age-Related Hearing Loss

From Left to Right: Madison McCabe, Elizabeth Kwok, Vanessa Volz and Haley Cook

This past August, Georgia Southern University graduate students in the Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSDS) program had the opportunity to partner with Georgia Relay and Georgia Center of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (GCDHH) for a Bingo Bash Hearing Loss Lunch and Learn in Port Wentworth, Georgia. The event was held to address hearing loss in the aging population. Graduate students provided attendees with hearing screenings, discussed hearing loss prevention and provided a presentation on age-related hearing loss. Participants of this event enjoyed riveting games of Bingo, won prizes, enjoyed a delicious lunch and learned about the many different services Georgia Relay, Georgia Center of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing and Georgia Southern University have to offer.

Georgia Southern University Armstrong Campus 

Department of Rehabilitation Sciences Dept # 4902
11935 Abercorn Street
Savannah, GA 31419